Exercise: Enablers for Relationships

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For each pillar there are enablers to achieving your strategic priorities, and things that will act as detractors, blockages, or anchors to your progress.

What enablers do you need to have in place to make your strategic priorities happen?

  • Capacity. What capacity do you need to build in order to invest in your chosen strategic relationships and be more present when it matters? How might it affect your choices in the other pillars?
  • Environment. What changes might you need to consider to your home or other environments to make it more conducive to supporting your relationship intentions and aspirations?
  • Boundaries. What boundaries might you need to put in place to protect and prioritise your commitments and to enable you to demonstrate vulnerability, compassion, wholehearted love? What might you need to say ‘no’ to, or say ‘yes’ to? What are you going to be clearer on with your key relationship stakeholders?
  • Being clear is kind. It’s also essential to avoid disappointment. What expectations management and role definition might need to take place to enable that? How about communicating and openly discussing your relationship strategy to ensure alignment and ownership of all parties?
  • Financially. Consider what you have chosen will mean in terms of financial investment. Will you need to do some financial planning, investment or financial management to enable your choices? Do you need to create a budget to manage, do you need to make some savings or reduce costs by changing your cost model, or change your income streams? For example, renovations to your home to make it a place that you can enjoy together? Investing in some domestic or home support so that you and your partner aren’t constantly doing battle over who should be doing what in the home?
  • Emotionally. Consider how your mental state will impact the success you will have in making the change that you seek. Are you ready to take the actions associated with the conscious choices you want to make, and the changes that it will entail? If you know that something is going to trigger you emotionally, you may want to seek help to support you through the journey. What mental resilience and preparation will you need to put in place to enable you to overcome these feelings and deal with these challenges? What do you need to address to ensure that you can overcome any feelings of guilt or dereliction of duty that your choices may evoke in you or others?
  • Physically. Do you have any physical barriers to reaching your goals? Consider whether you are addressing these issues positively so that you are in a position to be successful.
  • Supporters. Who could act as a support, critical friend, partner, mentor or guide on your journey?

What detractors might undermine your success? For every conscious choice that you make about a strategic priority, there are detractors that can undermine and block your progress. These can take the form of:

  • Short term gains over longer term more strategic priorities. The urgent always drowns out the important. Focus on the rocks in your life and not the sand.
  • Limiting beliefs or assumptions such as that you don’t deserve success, you are not good enough, you don’t have enough time or energy, there are too many competing priorities.
  • Criticism and lack of belief or support from critical relations, partners, friends.
  • Self-defeating defensive thinking and behaviours – has your brain become wired in a certain way as a protection from something that happened in the past, an unconscious commitment that might stop you from achieving your conscious commitments? In their book ‘Immunity to Change’ Robert Kegan and Laskow Lahey give great insights on how to uncover those mental models that hold us prisoner and resist change.

Capture some notes on what you will put in place to enable you to achieve your strategic priorities in your Relationships pillar.

Draft your enabler statement and what it means (including what you will need to overcome).